I'm editing/formatting a book for a client and I've run into a bit of a technical issue--I've never formatted a book for print before and I can't seem to find the answer to the following question:

Are there standard margin sizes for specific book/page sizes?

The client has told me that the book should be formatted to be 6x9, but I've looked around different forums and it seems that everyone has their own preferred margins--is there no industry standard?

If not, what are some safe bets to go with? Also, will the margins for an ebook and a printed one differ? I would assume so do to the binding, but if they do, by how much?

A huge thanks in advance.

  • 1
    Find 10 or 20 6x9 books. Measure the margins with a ruler. Take the average or use the most common. Print out a few test pages and make sure they look good. Nov 30 '18 at 11:12

When I was still in school I remember they had some outline for formatting books for our print department.

For 6x9 I believe it was 0.5" for headers and footers, 0.7" mirrored margin on the top, bottom and right side. The inside margin depends on the page count, I couldn't remember what they were off the top of my head but I was able to find the following:

24-150 pages, 0.375" inside margin
151-400 pages, 0.75" inside margin
400-600 pages, 0.875" inside margin
600+ pages, 1.0" inside margin

Doing some further research online, it looks like my school aligned with CreateSpace's guidelines: https://timctaylor.wordpress.com/2012/07/07/how-to-set-margins-microsoft-word-vs-createspace-vs-traditional-typesetting/

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